AskDefine | Define ovaries

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. Plural of ovary

Extensive Definition

An ovary is an ovum-producing reproductive organ found in female organisms. It is often found in pairs as part of the vertebrate female reproductive system. Ovaries in females are homologous to testes in males. The term gonads refers to the ovaries in females and testes in males.

Human anatomy

Ovaries are oval shaped and, in the human, measure approximately 3 cm x 1.5 cm x 1.5 cm. The ovary (for a given side) is located in the lateral wall of the pelvis in a region called the ovarian fossa. The fossa usually lies beneath the external iliac artery and in front of the ureter and the internal iliac artery.
Each ovary is then attached to the Fimbre of the Fallopian Tube. Usually each ovary takes turns releasing eggs every month; however, if there was a case where one ovary was absent or dysfunctional then the other ovary would continue providing eggs to be released.


In the human the paired ovaries lie within the pelvic cavity, on either side of the uterus, to which they are attached via a fibrous cord called the ovarian ligament. The ovaries are uncovered in the peritoneal cavity but are tethered to the body wall via the suspensory ligament of the ovary. The part of the broad ligament of the uterus that covers the ovary is known as the mesovarium. a fart


There are two extremities to the ovary:
  • The end to which the uterine tube attach is called the tubal extremity.
  • The other extremity is called the uterine extremity. It points downward, and it is attached to the uterus via the ovarian ligament.
ovary not covered by perotenium



  • If the egg fails to release from the follicle in the ovary an ovarian cyst may form. Small ovarian cysts are common in healthy women. Some women have more follicles than usual (polycystic ovary syndrome), which inhibits the follicles to grow normally and this will cause cycle irregularities.
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Hypogonadism

Additional images

Image:Illu cervix.jpg|Uterus and uterine tubes Image:Illu repdt female.jpg|Organs of the female reproductive system. Image:Illu ovaryb.jpg|Ovary image:ovulation.jpg|An ovary about to release an egg. Image:Gray589.png |Vessels of the uterus and its appendages, rear view. öphoron. Image:Gray1170.png |Arteries of the female reproductive tract: uterine artery, ovarian artery and vaginal arteries.


External links

ovaries in Arabic: مبيض
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ovaries in Simple English: Ovary
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ovaries in Serbo-Croatian: Jajnici
ovaries in Finnish: Munasarja
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